My Baby Is Foaming At The Mouth! What’s Wrong?!

baby foaming at mouth
pavelkraus / Pixabay

It’s an understandable cause for alarm. Your baby is foaming at the mouth, like Cujo from the Stephen King novel. First, you can relax a little on that point, as it’s quite unlikely that your child has rabies. So what gives? Can your little one breathe properly? In this article we are going to discuss why your baby is foaming at the mouth and what you can do. So take a moment to calm yourself down a little and let’s discuss!

Why is your newborn bubbling at the mouth?

In most cases the causes for this may be fairly innocuous. Some reasons why your baby is foaming at the mouth may include the following:

  • Baby needs more burping – If your baby is not burped often and efficiently then the foaming might be caused from something as simple as gas from feedings. Popular means of burping your baby are to lay baby down and ‘bicycle’ their legs or even laying them on their stomach for a moment to add a little burp pressure. Try these or the standard shoulder-burp and see if this does the trick.
  • Amniotic fluid in the stomachDuring your pregnancy your baby actually swallows amniotic fluid all the time. It’s harmless for baby but once they are outside of your body they will expel it. This can cause those bubbles that you are seeing and should soon pass (typically within 3 days if your child is a newborn. If they are older, then this should already be expelled and amniotic fluid is not your culprit.
  • Too much milk – Overfeeding can cause foaming, in this case you are seeing milk bubbles. A slower flow nipple can help if you are bottle feeding, if breastfeeding then make sure that you are not switching breasts before 15 minutes have passed, as your baby may be getting too much foremilk and not enough hindmilk.
  • Acid reflux – An upset stomach from acid reflux can cause a lot of milk to go from baby’s belly to their mouth. Getting your baby to sleep on their side can help, as well as simply employing a wedge under the baby’s mattress so that your baby is sleeping at a slight incline.
  • Infection – Here is the worst case scenario of this list. If your newborn baby is being overly fussy and producing foamy mouth bubbles then there is a rare, but possible chance of a lung infection and you will want to visit your pediatrician. This also applies to discolored bubbles. If you are seeing any colored bubbles then a doctor’s appointment right away is going to be your best option.

Are there other reasons that cause bubbles

baby bubbles mouth
RobinHiggins / Pixabay

in my newborns mouth?

There are a few other things that you can watch for If the previous measures have not proven to be the cause of your newborn having spit-bubbles then look for these other signs:

  • Did you try a new food today? – If your newborn is bubbling at the mouth and you’ve just tried a new food on the same day, then you might want to phase this food out of their diet for a few months to be on the safe side.

“There is a simple way that you can help your baby.”

  • Is baby more uneasy than normal or feverish? – Anytime a surprise fever comes into play it is time is a good time to visit your pediatrician. Coupled with the foaming, it could be a very visual sign of illness and should not be ignored.
  • Is baby losing weight? – Your baby may not be getting enough nutrition. A visit to the pediatrician is a good idea, as they will have some good suggestions for making the most out of feedings (and can rule out any illness possibilities).
  • Has your baby recently been vaccinated? – Some vaccinations can cause your baby to have bubbles in their mouth. Typically you will get some documentation to go with your vaccines so the first thing that you will want to do is check it for the side-effects listed. Generally the documentation will advise if this is normal and if you don’t see this as a side then contact the office where the vaccinations were administered right away. The odds are that this is normal but you want to rule out any sort of adverse reaction.

Remember that this is most likely a digestive issue

Most likely what you are seeing is simply milk that is coming back to visit due to reflux or overfeeding and there is a simple way that you can help your baby. Light tummy massage can help your baby and don’t forget those burping sessions. Your little one has a developing digestive system and it is far from efficient at this point. In most cases when your baby has mouth bubbles then this is going to be the culprit. So relax, try to rule out the worst-case scenario options, and see what happens. Of course you can also consult your pediatrician. Whenever you are in doubt, this is the best course of action. It takes very little time on your part and while some people think it is overkill to always consult a doctor, this is your baby we are talking about. There is nothing wrong with consulting an expert as that is what they are there for!

newborn bubbling at mouth
Bru-nO / Pixabay

In closing

Today we have discussed the various non-rabies causes of a baby that is foaming at the lips or mouth. As you can see, in most cases this is going to be something innocuos, rather like an adult drooling in their sleep (in fact, often VERY MUCH the same!). So take a deep breath to relax yourself and use our lists to help you narrow down the symptoms so you can get a better idea what is making your baby so foamy. With a lot of attention and some TLC from mommy and daddy you’ll get this licked in no time!


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